Phone callers claims to raise funds for local fire, EMS

Published 8:00 am Thursday, September 17, 2020


Mac Yates, Lawrence County EMS executive director of operations, said they had heard that telemarketers, under the name of “Firefighters and EMS Fund,” are calling to collect donations for training and equipment for local fire and EMS.


Yates said that Lawrence County EMS has no affiliation with any fundraising group and they are funded by taxpayers.


“Lawrence County EMS is a tax funded Emergency Medical Service and does not solicit funding outside of tax revenue and patient billing,” Yates said. “Neither Lawrence County EMS, nor any local fire department we are aware of, solicit donations via telephone. Any donation given will in no way assist any local emergency service and will be received by an imposter not any of the supposed public safety organizations.”


Lawrence County property owners pay a 2 percent tax to fund EMS. Most of the EMS service is funded by billing patients for services provided.


Firefighters and EMS fund is a political non-profit group based in Arlington, Virginia. Contributions are not tax deductible.


Yates put the message out on social media, under the header of “scam alert,” and is asking people to share the information with family and friends, especially the elderly.


“These scammers regularly use such means to confuse the elderly community who may think they are making a responsible charitable donation when in reality they are being taken advantage of by criminals,” Yates said. “If you are contacted by such a person who has the audacity to misrepresent themselves in such a way, please contact the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department and report this activity.”


The number for the sheriff’s department is 740-532-3525.